Matthew Hays's picture

Lambda Legal Drops First Non-Binary Client

Lambda Legal, an LGBT legal firm, recently dropped the nations first person with legal non-binary status. It is citing “inappropriate media statements that are harming the transgender community.”

Jamie Shupe was informed by phone earlier this month that they would be dropped by the firm. Shupe was informed they took a “position contrary to, and irreconcilable with, Lambda Legal’s organizational interests,” its other transgender clients, and members of the transgender community at large. Lambda Legal is also citing Shupe's support for Washing State Initiative 1552, which mandates bathroom usage on biological gender, and statements made surrounding transgender people serving in the military.

Shupe entered into the agreement with Lambda Legal as they are trying to get the non-binary status on their passport.

Shupe is saying that they felt they were being forced to push Lambda Legal’s agenda by having the firm represent them. Any pre-planned media or publicity was to be approved by Lambda Legal first. Shupe admits being aware of this within their retainer, but still decided to go ahead with the representation. They say they almost dared Lamba Legal to fire them.

This is not the first time Shupe has been outspoken in their ideas and thoughts. This has not put them into a typical LGBT mold and finds them at odds with the transgender community. They argue that those with gender dysphoria and those wanting to under go HRT and sex reassignment surgery may not be fit to serve in the military. Shupe uses their experience of serving for 18 years in the military and the fact they overcame gender dysphoria as the litmus test for those who they think can serve. I would argue that Shupe’s experience is limited and shouldn’t be used for everyone else looking to serve.

Shupe has also been outspoken about Chelsea Manning putting him at odds with ACLU as well.

Shupe identifies as feminine/female but not biological female, and was born biological male. This helped win the case for officially identifying as non-binary and has opened the door for more than 250 people in Oregon to have their identity listed as “X”.  

While being outspoken on transgender military issues, Shupe is also outspoken on transgender issues in general. They do believe gender dysphoria is real but that HRT and sex reassignment surgery will never change ones biological sex. They are also against children having sexual reassignment surgery.

Shupe says they are only working to speak truth, and that they will continue to do so, even if it puts them at odds with the LGBT community at large.

I don’t fully know Shupe’s thoughts on everything, but it does seem that certain things they say are not helping the Trans community and could be hurting it. It also seems to be at odds with psychological work and studies. Also, if it is going to go against Lambda Legal’s mission, I understand them dropping Shupe as a client.

What are your thoughts on the issue and Shupe’s statements?

H/T: LifeSite


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